What Does That Have To Do With My Sinuses
These changes in the atmosphere’s weight can impact more than just the weather. Here’s what that means for your sinuses. Our sinuses are filled with air, and the pressure in those sinuses is no longer at equilibrium with the pressure outside of the body when the barometric pressure changes. This difference in pressure is what causes sinus pressure and sinus headaches, which can be exacerbated by an existing sinus infection, allergies, congestion, or other sinus issues. When the atmospheric pressure drops, it can also cause lower blood pressure, which can result in dizziness, blurred vision, and fatigue in some cases. This “perfect storm” of circumstances and symptoms can make it hard to go about your day and even keep you from getting out of bed if the symptoms are bad enough.
At Ashford Clinic, we can help with all of your ENT issues like sinus infections, allergies, and more. Give us call to learn more or to schedule an appointment.
Can You Have Sinus Pressure But No Congestion
Can you have sinus pressure but no congestion? And if you can, does this mean you have a sinus infection that requires special treatment? If not, exactly what can mimic a sinus infection?
Unfortunately, the answers to this slippery slope of questions arent always so cut and dry. In particular, with a headache like this, theres a chance that its not a sinus headache, but a migraine. The treatment and causes of a migraine and sinus pressure are very different, but the symptoms can overlap significantly. These overlapping symptoms can lead to confusion and leave people at a loss for which types of treatment to pursue.
If youre feeling sinus pressure without the typical influx of mucus, heres what you need to know.
How To Tell The Difference Between Sinus Congestion And Head Congestion
The main difference between sinus congestion and head congestion is the duration of symptoms. Sinus congestion may cause a sinus infection, which comes with symptoms lasting up to four weeks. Talk to your doctor if you think you may have a sinus infection. Head congestion as part of a cold is usually gone in seven to 10 days.
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What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Sinusitis
Some of the signs that someone may have bacterial sinusitis are:
- a stuffy or runny nose with a daytime cough that lasts for 10 to 14 days or longer without improvement
- continuous thick green mucus discharge from the nose
- lasting dull pain or swelling around the eyes
- tenderness or pain in or around the cheekbones
- a feeling of pressure in your head
- a headache when you wake up in the morning or when bending over
- bad breath, even after brushing your teeth
- pain in the upper teeth
- a fever higher than 102°F
Some people also have a nighttime dry cough and find it hard to sleep. Others have upset stomachs or feel nauseous.
Many of these symptoms are similar to those you can get from viral sinusitis or allergies. Still, it’s a good idea to see your doctor just in case. Viral sinusitis and allergic rhinitis are more common, but bacterial sinusitis often needs to be treated with antibiotics, and you can only get these with a doctor’s prescription.
Causes Of Sinus Congestion
- Viral Sinus Infection. Part of the common cold. A cold infects the lining of the nose. It also involves the lining of all the sinuses.
- Bacterial Sinus Infection. A problem when the sinus becomes infected with bacteria. . It starts as a viral sinus infection. Main symptoms are increased sinus pain or return of fever. The skin around the eyelids or cheeks may become red or swollen. Thick nasal secretions that last over 14 days may point to a sinus infection. This can occur in younger children.
- Allergic Sinus Reaction. Sinus congestion often occurs with nasal allergies . Sneezing, itchy nose and clear nasal discharge point to this cause.
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Spice Up Your Diet To Ease Sinus Pressure
“Many people find that spicy food like peppers or hot mustard opens up their nasal passages and gives them some relief from sinus pain. There is good evidence that capsaicin, which is the active ingredient found in chile peppers, is effective in relieving some types of pain,” says Das. Capsaicin preparations have been investigated for the treatment of some facial pain syndromes and of rhinitis with promising results. But if you have the taste for them, you can try spicy foods to help with sinus discomfort.
Sinus Pain And Pressure
Fluid trapped in the sinuses can fill the sinus cavities, causing intense pain and pressure. The sinuses may be sensitive to the touch. A person may have an urge to sneeze but be unable to do so.
The pain can be in the cheeks, around the eyes and nose, or in the forehead because these areas are where the sinuses are. Bending over may make the pain worse.
Sometimes, the pressure and pain are intense enough to interfere with sleep.
Sinusitis may also cause the tissue in the nose to swell.
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Anatomy Of The Paranasal Sinuses
The paranasal sinuses comprise four pairs of sinuses that surround the nose and drain into the nasal cavity by way of narrow channels called ostia . Mucus leaving the frontal and maxillary sinuses drains through the ethmoid sinuses , so a backup in the ethmoids is likely to clog the other two types of sinuses. The sphenoid sinuses are located deep in the skull, behind the eyes. Sinusitis develops when one or more sinuses become blocked.
There are millions of bacteria in our noses, and most of the time, they’re harmless. Even when a few creep into the sinuses, they don’t cause trouble, as long as they keep draining into the nose along with mucus. But if sinus drainage is blocked, glands in the sinuses continue to produce mucus, and the resulting pool of backed-up mucus provides what Dr. Metson calls “the perfect culture medium.” The bacteria grow out of control, causing infection, and the immune system kicks off an inflammatory response. The result: swelling, which causes and facial pain mucus buildup, which produces congestion and an influx of white blood cells to fight the bacteria, which thickens the mucus and may tint it yellow or green. Other symptoms include loss of smell or taste, cough, bad breath, fever, toothache, and fullness in the ears.
Make The Sinus Pain And Mind
“Techniques that take advantage of the mind-body connection, such as deep breathing practices and relaxation exercises, can be very effective for relieving sinus pain,” notes Das. These practices rely on the mind’s ability to influence pain perception and are especially helpful with chronic or recurrent pain that is often seen with sinus pressure. Some examples include biofeedback, meditation, yoga, and hypnotherapy.
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When Should I Go See The Doctor About A Sinus Infection
It is pretty easy to care for most sinus conditions on your own. However, if you continue to have symptoms that concern you or if your infections continue to happen, your primary care doctor might suggest you see a specialist. This could also happen if your CT scan shows something that does not look right.
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Sinusitis, or swelling of the tissues of the sinus cavities, is a common condition with many causes, including viruses and bacteria, nasal polyps or allergies. Signs and symptoms may including facial pressure, fever and tiredness. You can treat symptoms at home by resting, taking over-the-counter products and increasing your fluid intake. Make sure you contact your healthcare provider if symptoms do not improve, if sinusitis happens often or if you have any symptom that worries you.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 06/04/2020.
How To Do A Nasal Rinse
Nasal saline rinses are a good way to treat discomfort and congestion. They can help flush out mucus, debris, and irritants, and soothe nasal passages.
A neti pot can be used to do this. You fill a pot with a saline rinse that you can buy.
- Place the spout of the pot against one nostril.
- Tilt your head to the side.
- The saline will pour out of the lower nostrilthanks to gravity.
- Repeat steps with the other nostril.
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Allergies And Sinus Headaches
Ever heard that allergies cause sinus headaches? Itâs not quite that simple.
Allergies can cause sinus congestion, which can make your head hurt. Treatment for your allergies can ease that congestion, but it wonât relieve your headache pain. You usually have to treat the two conditions separately. See your doctor to make sure you get the right help.
How To Spot The Difference Between Migraines & Sinus Headaches
If you have a runny nose, watery eyes and your head hurts, you might assume that you have a sinus headache. But studies show that about 90% of self-diagnosed sinus headaches are actually migraine.
Theres a belief that sinus headache is a common illness. The marketing of over-the-counter medications designed to treat these symptoms reinforce this belief.. However, a sinus headache is not as common as you might think.
How can you tell if you have migraine or sinus headache and get the treatment you need? Lets start by defining migraine and sinus headache.
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Seasonal Allergies And Hay Fever
Seasonal allergies can even become the primary cause of sinus inflammation. Allergies can cause blockage of drainage containing the regular sinus aspect and also predispose any person to the development of sinus infections.
Any person can experience sinus irritation or congestion during the hay fever season. The pollen count can jump even high during the season, and the exposure to allergens is even high, like the mould or animal dander.
It is necessary to see the doctor for treatments to alleviate symptoms.
How Is Sinusitis Treated
Sinusitis is treated in several ways, each depending on how severe the case of sinusitis is.
A simple sinusitis infection is treated with:
- Drinking fluids .
If symptoms of sinusitis don’t improve after 10 days, your doctor may prescribe:
- Antibiotics .
- Oral or topical decongestants.
- Prescription intranasal steroid sprays. .
Long-term sinusitis may be treated by focusing on the underlying condition . This is usually treated with:
- Intranasal steroid sprays.
- Topical antihistamine sprays or oral pills.
- Leukotriene antagonists to reduce swelling and allergy symptoms.
- Rinsing the nose with saline solutions that might also contain other types of medication.
When sinusitis isn’t controlled by one of the above treatments, a CT scan is used to take a better look at your sinuses. Depending on the results, surgery may be needed to correct structural problems in your sinuses. This is most likely to happen if you have polyps and/or a fungal infection.
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Reasons For Sinus Pressure Without Congestion:
The sinusitis may be due to a bacterial infection which lasts longer than ten days and those who last longer for weekends are due to fungal infection. Dizziness caused due to fluid build-up in the ear.
This fluid puts pressure on the eardrum and inner ear. It affects the vestibule labyrinth and hence causes vertigo and dizziness.
Another symptom that many known with the dizziness is nausea, and this is related to the unsteadiness.
For a sinus infection that causes dizziness fatigue, it is likely a substantial infection. Dizziness is an unusual symptom and can lead to difficulties. Thats why it should be treated by a physician punctually. Sinus pressure and dizziness without congestion are one of the basic necessity of any sinus patient.
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Nasal Discharge: Cause Treatments And Prevention
What is nasal discharge?
Mucus isnt just a slimy material in your nose it actually has a useful purpose. It traps bacteria, other germs, and debris, and prevents them from entering your lungs.
In some cases, such as when you have a cold or allergies, mucus may flow out of your nose or down your throat. When mucus comes out of your nose, its called nasal discharge. It can also be called post-nasal drip or rhinorrhea.
Although its annoying, nasal discharge is common and usually goes away on its own. But in some cases, its a sign of an underlying health problem that might require medical attention.
There are many potential causes of nasal discharge. Some of the most common include infections and allergies.
Also Check: Does A Sinus Infection Require Antibiotics
How Do You Know If Youre Experiencing Sinus Pressure
Before we get into the weeds of answering the question, Can you have sinus pressure but no congestion? its important that we review the basics of sinus pressure.
A sinus headache is a symptom of built-up pressure in the sinus cavities typically causing maxillary sinus pain. This buildup occurs when your nasal passages mucus can no longer drain properly. In other words, sinus pressure and the sinus sinus headaches it causes are linked to congestion.Since pressure buildup can get intense, many people have confused sinus pressure for a migraine and vice versa. However, sinus pressure is typically accompanied with other symptoms and frequently occurs in tandem with certain conditions.
If youre experiencing any of the following situations, you may be feeling the effects of sinus pressure instead of a migriane:
- You are feeling throbbing around your eyes, forehead, and nose. You may also be feeling this throbbing in your cheeks, jaw, ears, teeth, or back of the head.
- You are currently suffering from allergies or have a sinus infection.
- You have thick mucus.
- You feel the majority of the pain in the morning.
Keep in mind that if you do have sinus pressure, this doesnt necessarily mean you have a sinus infection. Everyday, non-serious issues, including allergies and the common cold can lead to sinus pressure and sinus headaches.
If you are experiencing congestion, here are a few quick tips on how to get rid of sinus congestion.
How Do You Diagnose Sinus Headaches Caused By Migraines
Sinus headaches are most likely due to migraines or tension headaches. Migraines are diagnosed by symptoms, including the frequency and severity of symptoms, family history, and by physical exam. Migraines can also include nausea and vomiting. These episodes may be triggered by hormonal changes, lack of sleep, certain foods or alcohol or caffeine, stress, or environmental changes like weather, altitude changes, or allergens. Many patients with migraines have family members who also experience migraine headaches.
If you have unusual or severe symptoms, additional tests such as an MRI of the brain may be ordered to rule out more serious conditions that can cause headache pain, such as tumors or bleeding around the brain. If you have repeated episodes of sinus pain and pressure, a nasal endoscopy or imaging such as an MRI or CT scan can determine if sinus pain or pressure is due to a sinus infection or other sinus pathology. A normal sinus CT scan while you have symptoms could help rule out sinusitis, and determine if migraines, headaches, or other causes of facial pain and pressure are causing the sinus symptoms.
Other causes of facial pain and pressure can include temporomandibular joint syndrome, clenching or grinding your teeth, trigeminal nerve pain, temporal arteritis , dental infection, or other neurologic causes of facial pain.
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Watching For Sinus Issues Matter For High Blood Pressure Patients
Sinuses can become a primary gateway for many diseases when it is breached. It can leave any patient very much vulnerable to compromised health, not just for high blood pressure. Saying so, the effects of and warning signs of hypertension can be lethal.
Chronic sinus congestion can also lead to bad snoring problems for many patients and a problem associated with deep sleep. It has a significant association with an increased risk of heart, vessels and cardiovascular diseases.
Furthermore, chronic inflammation in the sinuses when it has associated with allergies can cause other significant problems such as lethargy, fatigue, cognitive impairment and immune system deficiencies.
It is vital to remember that infection related to sinus can cause considerable trouble for the patient overall.
However, the patient can have an effective treatment not just by the primary care physician but also from the Allergist or Otolaryngologist. It is strictly said before the conditions can get worse for the patients suffering from a severe sinus problem, they need to visit the doctor.
Tip: Here are the Best Blood Pressure Monitors of the year.
Irrigate To Relieve Sinus Pressure
“Salt water irrigation is the best way to cleanse the nose and sinuses this can help prevent or relieve sinus pain. You can use an over-the-counter saline nasal spray, but I recommend using a sinus rinse bottle, neti pot, or bulb syringe irrigation kit that you can get at the drugstore,” advises Das.
Try this commonly-used, easy-to-make nasal irrigation solution with your own sinus irrigation kit: Fill a clean 8-ounce glass with distilled or sterilized lukewarm water. Do not use tap water unless it has been boiled for at least 1 minute . Add 1/2 teaspoon of non-iodized salt and a pinch of baking soda. And be sure to clean all equipment and make a fresh batch of solution each time you use your kit.
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How You Can Find Relief
Its important to review your sinusitis symptoms and how long youve been having them with a physician. Teladoc doctors can help you determine the possible cause of your symptoms, especially if youre concerned you may have COVID-19. If your sinus problems are caused by allergies, there are strategies and medications that can help bring relief. While bothersome mucus is often an effect of a viral infection, a bacterial infection can develop after a virus has taken hold. In this case, oral antibiotics can help with healing.
Regardless of whats causing all this congestion, try to put the to-do list aside and get some rest. If youre having pain, you can take an over-the-counter pain reliever like acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Petroleum jelly can soothe a sore nose on the outside, while nasal drops or a nasal irrigation device can help flush out nasal passages on the inside. Treat and blow each nostril separately, Dr. Hood says.
Also, dont forget about all that mucus youre losing: Moisture should play a key role in your return to good health. Drink plenty of liquids like water, juice, warm broth or soup, Dr. Hood says, and use a cool-mist humidifier to soothe the airways, especially when sleeping. Steam from hot showers can help reduce inflammation and make breathing easier. Also try a warm compress on the nose, cheekbones or forehead for relief from sinusitis symptoms, he adds.